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Enhancing Visual Meaning: Measuring Visual Communication Design Effectiveness

By Felicity Jang

Craib, D., AOCA, M., & Imbesi, L. Enhancing Visual Meaning: Measuring Visual Communication Design Effectiveness.

The authors, researchers at the Carleton University and Sapienza University of Rome, test if existing communication theories, including perception psychology, data visualization, and semiotics, can be developed into design criteria and tools to measure effectiveness in visual communication. Perception psychology communication theory is a study of psychology-based text legibility, while data visualization theory and semiotics theory is a study of design perspective and visual meaning, respectively. Their hypothesis is supported in visual communication by applying 20 case studies and effectiveness scores to each developed tools. Three criteria indicate positive correlation with effectiveness, but with minor limitation where research did not consider selection of theory as to which ones were the more or less effective. Three tested communication theories can be used to measure visual communication effectively as long as the theory is understood for researcher’s testing.